Quinte, On. real estate agent: Trenton Loses a Friend.

Trenton Loses a Friend.

It's sad that I don't even have a photograph, nor can I find one of Mike.

Last Friday the police in Trenton pulled a young man's body out of the river. On Sunday, once they could rule out foul play, the man's name was announced, and many people were shocked.

I first met Mike about 15 years ago when I owned a local gas station and he kept applying for a job. At least once a month for about three years he would come in, ask to speak to me, and hand me an application. I never did hire him, but it never phased him, nor did it ever make him bitter towards me. In fact, we became friends.

I learned that his nickname was "Bike Mike" because he was always picking up scrap bicycles and working on them until they gleamed and were in perfect working order. You could always find him riding around town on one of his new creations. Almost everybody in Trenton knew him by sight, and many also knew him by name. He was developmentally challenged, but it never affected his outlook on life, he was usually smiling. He kept busy cutting grass, shovelling snow, helping friends with projects and finding the occasional job.

It was uncanny how often he would be riding by my house when I was doing yard work. He'd always offer to help.

I am sure that many people in town will have similar stories about Mike, he did get around. I'm sure a lot of people were touched by his gentle and persistent nature. He was only 30 when he passed away, and he will be greatly missed in Trenton.

R.I.P. Bike Mike.


Comment balloon 18 commentsMalcolm Johnston • July 21 2011 03:49PM


Very touching story. Sad, but obviously Bike Mike made many good lasting impressions. Nice of you to write about him.

Posted by Jon Quist, Tucson's BUYERS ONLY Realtor since 1996 (REALTY EXECUTIVES TUCSON ELITE) over 7 years ago

Thank you Jon, yes Bike Mike will be remembered for a long time in Trenton.

Posted by Malcolm Johnston, Trenton Real Estate (Century 21 Lanthorn Real Estate LTD., Trenton, Ontario) over 7 years ago

I lost a client this week who battled cancer for a couple of years. Even with forewarning, you just never get used to losing someone you really like and respect.

Posted by Hella Mitschke Rothwell, Hawaii & California Real Estate Broker ((831) 626-4000) over 7 years ago

Malcolm, what a sweet post about Mike.  He sounds like a lovely person that touched a lot of people's lives.  Losing people we know is hard, in the past 2 years I have lost two clients that I was close to...I don't think death will ever get easy.  Thanks for sharing.  --Krystal

Posted by Krystal Knott, Breckenridge CO Real Estate & All Summit County CO (LIV Sotheby's International Realty) over 7 years ago

Malcolm- that was very kind and sweet of you to write about Mike.  You were a good friend to him.

Posted by Kathy Streib, Home Stager - Palm Beach County,FL -561-914-6224 (Room Service Home Staging) over 7 years ago

Malcolm, That's so sad. I heard on the news that 45 people in Ontario have drowned so far this summer. Many were boaters who were not wearing life jackets. A young girl in Hamilton jumped off a dock by a restaurant and drown.  

Posted by Janice Ankrett, Staging Professional (Janice Ankrett Home Staging) over 7 years ago

very sad but sweet post...

Posted by Sheila Newton Team Anderson & Greenville SC, Selling the Upstate since 1989 (Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices - C. Dan Joyner) over 7 years ago

How very sad, but a lovely tribute. 30 is far to young to end a life.

Posted by Ellie McIntire, Luxury service in Howard County & Catonsville (Ellicott City Clarksville Howard County Maryland Real Estate) over 7 years ago

I'm sorry for your loss Hella, and you're right, I don't think it ever gets easy.

Krystal, he really was a lovely person, sometimes we don't appreciate people like him.

Kathy, more like he was a good friend to me.

Janice, it has been a terrible summer in Ontario for drownings. They are always on the news.

Thank you Sheila.

Ellie, I agree, dying at 30 is tragic.

Posted by Malcolm Johnston, Trenton Real Estate (Century 21 Lanthorn Real Estate LTD., Trenton, Ontario) over 7 years ago

What a sweet tribute to Mike. I think most communities have a local character such as you described. And you're right, not every takes the time to appreciate unique souls.  It makes me really appreciate you Malcolm.

Posted by Debb Janes EcoBroker and Bernie Stea JD, REALTORS® in Clark County, WA (ViewHomes of Clark County - Nature As Neighbors) over 7 years ago


That is very sad. He was particularly young. There have been many swimming accidents in Ontario this year. This is trajic.


Posted by Brian Madigan, LL.B., Broker (RE/MAX West Realty Inc., Brokerage (Toronto)) over 7 years ago

Hi Malcolm~ You have a touching story about Mike. I can picture him being a local presence by the words you wrote. Your tribute to Bike Mike is inspirational.

Thank you,


Posted by Judi Boad (ACCURATE REALTY GROUP) over 7 years ago

Thank you Malcolm ... Actions and deeds are far reaching ... and tend to play in our minds again to provide some important message.    Mike is working for all of us.

Posted by Len Kobewka, You Can Scape-it (Prairie Scapes / Scape-it™) over 7 years ago

Bike Mike obviously made a lasting impression in your life Malcolm. I was touched by your tribute

Posted by Chris Smith, South Simcoe, Caledon, King, Orangeville Real Esta (Re/Max Chay Realty Inc., Brokerage) over 7 years ago

Malcolm - Mike obviously valued your friendship and I'm sure that meant more to him than any job you might have offered him. 

Posted by Norma Toering Broker for Palos Verdes and Beach Cities, Palos Verdes Luxury Homes in L.A. (Charlemagne International Properties) over 7 years ago

Malcolm I am sorry about Mike.  What a sweet post-I bet it would have meant alot to him.

Posted by Debbie Walsh, Hudson Valley NY Real Estate 845.283-3036 (Shahar Management) over 7 years ago

Thank you everybody for your kind comments.  I did manage to find a photograph of Michael.

Posted by Malcolm Johnston, Trenton Real Estate (Century 21 Lanthorn Real Estate LTD., Trenton, Ontario) over 7 years ago

A nice tie in to the post Malcolm.

Posted by Debbie Walsh, Hudson Valley NY Real Estate 845.283-3036 (Shahar Management) over 7 years ago